Stay near hidden heritage site
Stay near hidden heritage site
Come follow a wild mountain river to a village that time forgot! A village where the centuries-old Sumda Chun monastery with its imposing central deity of Vairocana still draws pilgrims. Part of a holy triad, along with the gompas at Alchi and Mangyu, believers once covered all three at great peril between day break and dusk! It’s still near impossible to get here without help. Years ago, the gompa also attracted Nepali copper artisans to make ceremonial objects. Their descendants now keep the blue flame burning at local smithies. Some even run homestays, where a warm hearth welcomes travellers.
The host families in the village follow a rotation system to maintain an equal distribution of income among all homestays. Rigzin Dolma is the local coordinator in the village. Expect warm, genuine hospitality from hosts, who are also traditional copper artists and skilled in knitting and weaving.
The hosts serve delicious local Ladakhi delicacies tweaked to suit all palates, along with a standard spread of roti, dal, rice, and vegetables. A true farm-to-table experience, all vegetables are organically grown in the village! Please inform us in advance though, if you have any specific requirements or allergies.
The built-heritage site of the Sumda Chun Monastery within the village should be your first stop. Visit it to see the unique, towering statue of Vairocana, and the paintings and relics from the earliest eras of Tibetan culture. The village is situated in the Hemis National Park—the starting point of the most popular Markha Valley Trek is 1-1.5hrs drive away. The copper artisans’ villages—Sumda Chenmo and Chilling—are also nearby.
First aid facility
Any personal expenses
Transportation to village
Additional Meals – Lunch, Dinner
Room service fee
Are you choosing this homestay because you need some time away from your urban life? Does living in a mud house in the mountains truly excite you? If your answer is yes, start packing your bags now! You might not get uninterrupted internet here, but you’ll be far too busy exploring the most breathtaking, most unseen corners of the trans-Himalayas, to miss your Twitter feed and news updates. The greatest luxury here is spending your days under a bright, blue sky at a beautiful mountain destination, getting freshly cooked organic food for every meal, and swapping stories with locals, who open their doors and hearts to you!
Guests like to eat our Ladakhi food. They say it is delicious, even when it is prepared by an elderly ama (mother) like me. I always make sure I serve them the cleanest and healthiest food. My husband is a copper artist. When guests leave us, they say ‘Julley’, and hug us. It makes us feel happy.
I became a Mountain Homestay Host in 2018, and I have hosted many travellers since then. Running a homestay has helped me and my family a lot. Not only is the solar set up in our house useful for us, but even travellers prefer to stay in our homestay because of it.
The training we got in astronomy turned out to be a life-changing experience for our village. I felt happy and proud while mapping the position of the planets and sharing the secrets of the universe with the tourists. Tourists told me that even they didn’t know so much about the dark skies!